Minestrone can be really dull but I’ve turned it up a notch and tried something new. I added some chopped up ham bones for extra flavour and omitted the green veges but instead add them every time I reheat the soup. Why? you might ask. Well, they only take a couple of minutes to cook and I personally dislike the way veges such as these lose their colour and vibrancy when added to soup. It works a treat and the soup feels super fresh every time.
Serves many & will keep in the fridge for a week!
1 medium onion, finely chopped
100ml olive oil
1 tsp chilli flakes (optional)
1 can organic lentils, rinsed & drianed
1 can cannellini beans, rinsed & drained
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 potato, peeled and diced
1/2 small cauliflower, cut into small pieces
3 sticks celery, finely diced
2 x 400g cans diced tomatoes
3 litres water
1 kg ham bones, chopped into pieces (ask your butcher to do this)
3 leaves silverbeet, leaves only, sliced finely (add as needed)
1/2 cup frozen peas (add as needed)
Salt & pepper
Parmesan to serve
Heat the oil in a large stock pot & saute the onion and chilli until soft.
Add the beans, carrot, potato, cauliflower, celery & tomatoes and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes.
Add the water and ham bones and bring to the boil.
Lower the heat and cook for 1+1/2hrs.
If serving all the soup straight away add the silverbeet and peas and cook for another 5 mins. If only serving a portion, ladle the soup into a small saucepan and add as much silverbeet and peas as you prefer.
Season the soup well with salt & pepper, top with parmesan and enjoy with crusty bread.